We see especially that transience is a part of life in the 17th-century Vanitas and Nature Morte paintings, which aim to remind us of life's inevitable passage with beautiful flowers, fruits and animals. The collection of fantasy objects from natural history museums belongs in this category, as do Jan Fabre's sculptures made of beetles. Images of death or working with dead people or animals (or their skeletons) are not only a clear reaction to a consciousness of 'time'; they also allow us to escape 'time'.
- From Artempo: Vanitas / Nature Morte
The virtual tour is highly suggested.
Time present and time past
Are both perhaps present in time future,
And time future contained in time past.
If all time is eternally present
All time is unredeemable.
- T.S. Eliot, Burnt Norton, Four Quartets
Thought with regard to what presences, presencing shows itself as letting-presence. But now we must try to think this letting-presence explicitly insofar as presencing is admitted. Letting shows its character in bringing into unconcealment. To let presence means: to unconceal, to bring to openness. In unconcealing prevails a giving, the giving that gives presencing, that is, Being, in letting-presence.
- Heidegger, Being and Time